We all go there, that place where death puts us on auto pilot and our truest self seems to appear. In grief, we are ground down to the very nub of our nature and have no energy to be anything other than our most authentic self.
Sometimes that is pretty darn ugly, to be honest. I have seen grief turn lovely persons into mean, vindictive, bitter, cruel, careless and at times, ignorant beings. They are hurting and they are seeking any way to get that pain OUT, so they lash out at those around them or worse, at themselves, drinking and drugging into oblivion and destroying relationships and people around them in the process.
More commonly, I see a kindness appear. I believe in the better humanity, I do, and this is why. My children, as teenagers often do, will eat each other live or sacrifice one another on an alter in a heartbeat just to get ahead. Or at least, it seems the case. That is, until death happens. And then something magical occurs, I glimpse the future adult in them, not through murky waters, but crystal clear. They are kind, compassionate, engaging, thoughtful, affectionate and patient. What warms this mother’s heart though is not that they do this with others, but they do it with each other, the one person who is supposed to be there FOREVER for them and that they can mistreat and still get to call sibling. But in death, in grief, they do not. Instead, they carry the burden of their brother or sister and the better shines through like a beacon on a dark night.
Most certainly, even though at times, I may wish to eat my young for their coltish attitudes, I do not when they are like this. For certainly, Death Becomes Them.